The Little Glass Box of the Liberal Left

posted at 3:30 pm on August 29, 2010 by Laura Brod

Last year was quite an experience as I was encouraged to run for Minnesota Governor. While ultimately I decided not to run, during that process, I was flooded with questionnaires from organizations seeking my views or trying to influence my opinions. One of the things which surprised me, though, is the nature of the questions I was asked by some organizations.

What particularly caught my eye was a questionnaire from a “Women’s” group. What were the questions? The majority of them were about abortion, gay marriage, and how much we should expand big government spending.

In the midst of the deepest recession in living memory and international uncertainties, those don’t strike me — or most people — as the issues keeping women (or men) up at night.

Where were the ideas of economic freedom and economic opportunity? Where were the questions about challenges that women business owners face in small business start-ups which are the mainstay of Main Streets throughout the country? Where were the questions about the national debt and its impact on our children’s future? Where were the questions about how we best educate the children of our country so that we have a qualified and well positioned workforce? This list goes on and on.

This self-described “women’s” group and many like it are more interested in litmus tests on liberal social issues than on what will materially improve women’s lives in the real day-to-day world where we are raising kids, struggling to make ends meet, and hoping that we or our spouses don’t lose their job (or will find one soon).

For decades now we have talked about the glass ceiling women once faced, and to a certain extent still do. But I am more worried about the glass box that liberal feminists have placed women and “women’s issues” in, all tied up with a pretty pink bow. That glass box is all about keeping women and “women’s issues” firmly in their place on the left side of the political spectrum.

Well, I for one, think that the real opportunity for female candidates and officeholders is not to define themselves as concerned about these supposed “women’s issues,” but instead to focus on the bread and butter issues that concern everybody in these troubling times.

The feminists of the past and present should be appalled that these self proclaimed women’s groups are doing in relegating the support of women to second tier or third tier issues which will not design a successful future for our country no matter what your political leanings might suggest that means. Finding and supporting strong, smart, and bold women of diverse thought ought to at least be as important or even more important to a feminist group claiming to support women candidates.

It should not be a surprising that women are actually very free thinking, engaged in complex issues in different ways, have significant experience and varied backgrounds, and don’t all think alike—what a shock! California, for example, has two very strong women running for office. California candidates Carly Fiorina and Meg Whitman exemplify what women’s groups should want in their candidates: strength, experience, tenacity, capability, and individuality. Liz Cheney and Sarah Palin are further examples of strong women who test the bounds of traditional thought. Whether you agree with them or not on policy, it is clear these are all women who do not easily fall in line with the social agenda of the left — or the establishment on the right– for that matter.

Women’s groups have attacked these high profile women, and others like them, who are not playing nice by being a typical female politician who will politely stay within the little glass box of issues pre-packaged up for them by the left. These women will shatter that little glass box and the step beyond the typical toward the possible.

Unfortunately, too many women’s groups attack candidates –women candidates– with excessive and stunning vitriol, if the candidates dare disagree with their group’s social agenda. Rather than lash out, they should be focused on encouraging diversity of thought by women and strong debate rather with than squelching it.

Liberal women’s groups seem to have an affinity for something akin to a Stepford Wife – a female candidate who will simply fall in line and think alike rather than female candidates who might challenge that agenda and take on the political establishment through varying experience and approach.

It is time groups like this think of women as true candidates with an important set of skills to bring to the table rather than as simply a demographic to be either used or won over.

Women’s issues are everyone’s issues. Everyone’s issues are women’s issues. If feminists truly want to promote women in politics and bring a feminine touch to state capitols and to Washington DC, they should understand that not all women think alike—that is something they should cherish, not lament. Then, women candidates will have succeeded and the country will win by having women of all political viewpoints at the table.

Note from Ed: Laura will join me tomorrow morning on The Ed Morrissey Show, live from the Minnesota State Fair, at 9 am CT — and again on Friday at the same time.  We’ll talk about this as well as the upcoming election.  Be sure to tune in!

This post was promoted from GreenRoom to HotAir.com.
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Love it!

txmomof6 on August 29, 2010 at 3:34 PM

I doubt that Sarah Palin’s name will come up.
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VegasRick on August 29, 2010 at 3:35 PM

It’s interesting that all these liberal women’s rights groups had a breakdown over Simpson saying “tit,” yet, they can’t work up any outrage against the way women are treated under Sharia law.

William Teach on August 29, 2010 at 3:36 PM

The same issues and needs for women should be the same as for men–smaller government, jobs, economy among a few.

dragondrop on August 29, 2010 at 3:38 PM

Please repeat this on a national TV camera now.

ClassicCon on August 29, 2010 at 3:43 PM

Welcome to identity politics…it’s not as important to improve your situation as it is to improve your situation relative to ‘others.’

James on August 29, 2010 at 3:44 PM

William Teach on August 29, 2010 at 3:36 PM

Yeah, it makes me question whether these “women’s groups” have ever considered the various “freedoms” available to women in Islamic nations. They are so busy hating Gov. Palin, et al, for being pro-life that they can’t be bothered thinking.

oldleprechaun on August 29, 2010 at 3:45 PM

But I am more worried about the glass box that liberal feminists have placed women and “women’s issues” in, all tied up with a pretty pink bow. That glass box is all about keeping women and “women’s issues” firmly in their place on the left side of the political spectrum.

Great! So amazing how true conservative women are vilified by media and the left for their views; more particularly, their view on abortion. You have Sarah Palin, who should be the cover girl for women and progress. Yet, she is so hated by these liberal women because she chose to have Trig rather than abort him.

carbon_footprint on August 29, 2010 at 3:47 PM

Also, these so-called women’s groups say nothing of the oppression and brutality directed at Muslim women in Islamic countries and even non-Islamic countries.

“Glass box”. I have to use that.

darwin on August 29, 2010 at 3:47 PM

Liberal minds have been programmed (brainwashed) to respond to external stimuli that is perceived to be unworthy of intellectual definition. If you look the word BIGOT up in any dictionary, it explains one who is intolerant of other people’s thoughts of views. Programed liberal minds reject any and all thought that has not been established through this indocrination process. The term libot decribes this thought process.

volsense on August 29, 2010 at 3:50 PM

Yet, she is so hated by these liberal women because she chose to have Trig rather than abort him.

carbon_footprint on August 29, 2010 at 3:47 PM

Palin shows women they can be anything they want without adhering to the diseased tenets of the left. For years women thought they had to be a “liberated” woman to suceed at anything. Palin and other women show them … uh, no you don’t. You don’t have to sacrifice femininity, modesty, fidelity, motherhood, marriage or your faith to excel.

darwin on August 29, 2010 at 3:51 PM

Yes!! I have been trying to say this for years. The same can be said for any of the identity groups.

MayBee on August 29, 2010 at 3:55 PM

Where were the ideas of economic freedom and economic opportunity?…

They don’t understand it and they don’t care about it. They think the amount of wealth existing in the country is a constant and the only issue is how the government should step in and divvy it up to make things “fair”.

forest on August 29, 2010 at 3:55 PM

This is an excellent summary of lefty libby so-called feminist, lock-step politics, and what we really need in women running for office. The Democrats are the party of interest groups, and frankly, they have not shown themselves very interested in women the past few years–just lockstep, and shut up. I left the Dem. party and am an Indy. And hey, if you don’t have a job, and a bank account and can’t pay your bills, a woman’s “choices” are very limited in real life. The Dems. seem to have missed that one.

hpushkin on August 29, 2010 at 3:58 PM

Liberals never stop trying to divide. The computer augmented ultrasound has ended the abortion debate, they just can’t accept that fact.

tarpon on August 29, 2010 at 3:59 PM

A slightly sardonic and utterly adorable song about feminists performed w/ Ukulele/blond bombshell. worth the click. Nellie McKay..

Republican Yogi on August 29, 2010 at 4:38 PM

Radical feminism had one goal -the breakup of the family through immoral behavior. Instead of holding philandering husbands feet to the matrimonial fire, the feminists decided that they too could have a piece of Satan’s pie.

It was just one more item that was on the American Communist party’s agenda to destroy that which made the nation what it was; the family centered on Judeo-Christian values.

So far they’ve had great success.

Don L on August 29, 2010 at 4:41 PM

Look at the last 2000 years of history. the more Judeo-Christian a nation is (or was) the more rights a women has. It is not perfect in the USA, but it is the best there is.

ny59giants on August 29, 2010 at 4:54 PM

Excellent thoughts in an enjoyable read. Her district and state are fortunate to have her service.

GaltBlvnAtty on August 29, 2010 at 4:55 PM

Very powerful article.

ButterflyDragon on August 29, 2010 at 4:55 PM

I’m starting to be convinced this is all just about a small percentage of our country who just want to be “different”.

It has nothing to do with thinking, they merely find a position that is the opposite of common sense and decency and take it.

Then the adopt some idiot countercultural argument for their own and presto – they are “different”.

When there’s nothing all that special about you, you feel compelled to seperate yourself via superficial nonsense such as dress, tattoos, sexual preference, piercings and political opinion.

Used to be people grew out of crap like this but now people are going into their geriatric years holding onto it.

NoDonkey on August 29, 2010 at 4:56 PM

But I am more worried about the glass box that liberal feminists have placed women and “women’s issues” in… That glass box is all about keeping women and “women’s issues” firmly in their place on the left side of the political spectrum.

Yes! People like you, Sarah, Michelle Bachmann, etc. are redefining feminism, re-framing it in holistic terms, rescuing it from the narrow confines of cynical leftist identity politics… and it’s a glorious thing to behold.

Oh and Laura, sounds like we NEED YOU TO RUN.

petefrt on August 29, 2010 at 4:57 PM

William Teach on August 29, 2010 at 3:36 PM

I wonder if any of the liberal female pols have an opinion on the recent Newsweek (or was it Time) cover of the Aghani woman who had her nose cut off by the Taliban for some peculiar transgression or another. Such a charming action, ladies.

chai on August 29, 2010 at 5:13 PM

ooooops:

I wonder if any of the liberal female pols have an opinion on the recent Newsweek (or was it Time) cover of the Aghani woman who had her nose cut off by the Taliban for some peculiar transgression or another. Such a charming action, ladies.

chai on August 29, 2010 at 5:15 PM

It is time groups like this think of women as true candidates with an important set of skills to bring to the table rather than as simply a demographic to be either used or won over.

The left sees women, like their other identity groups, as tools to be manipulated to advance their agenda.

petefrt on August 29, 2010 at 5:17 PM

and yet these same “womens rights groups”………are soooooo awfly queit on the effects of Islam and Sharia law on women’s rights…….

sbark on August 29, 2010 at 5:32 PM

Annie Lennox – Walking On Broken Glass

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y25stK5ymlA

canopfor on August 29, 2010 at 5:33 PM

For decades now we have talked about the glass ceiling women once faced, and to a certain extent still do. But I am more worried about the glass box that liberal feminists have placed women and “women’s issues” in, all tied up with a pretty pink bow. That glass box is all about keeping women and “women’s issues” firmly in their place on the left side of the political spectrum.
=============================================

Imagine the Liberal FemeNazi’s world vision,when a Republican Women,is elected to President or Vice-Pr
esident,or BOTH!!!

Oh Da Horror,Nurse Ratchet,Lefty Female heads are a
explody kabluey in all the little tents that sprawl
within the Progressive big tent,Nurse Ratchet we have,
a,Code El Pinko!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!(sarc).

canopfor on August 29, 2010 at 5:42 PM

Pat Benatar – Invincible

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=drSCtseoNxQ

canopfor on August 29, 2010 at 5:46 PM

It should not be a surprising that women are actually very free thinking, engaged in complex issues in different ways, have significant experience and varied backgrounds, and don’t all think alike—what a shock!
======================================

Independent,non-locking stepped Stepford Wife Robots who
do not,nor ever will,bow,or kneel at the Alter of Femenism
and Liberalism!!

canopfor on August 29, 2010 at 5:52 PM

A good read … the truth always is.

Thx Laura.

Brass on August 29, 2010 at 5:53 PM

Liberals are constantly spouting off about how bright, strong, thinking women naturally gravitate to the left. Loud, yes, and capable of memorizing talking points, too, but strong, independent thinking women? No,I don’t see it and I’ve never seen it.

Conservative women are also a far sight prettier, too.

ncjetsfan on August 29, 2010 at 5:58 PM

Strong women like Michelle Bachmann,Sarah Palin,Liz Cheney and Laura Brod drive the liberal women groups bonkers. Whatever name this women groups chose to call themselves- they are first and upmost- liberals. Sarah Palin scares them to death. Here is a women who is very attractive and has mothered and raised five children and held public office and the more that they and their fellow liberals and democrats bash her the more popular she has become. These women are everything that the members of these so called women groups are not.

flintstone on August 29, 2010 at 5:59 PM

canopfor on August 29, 2010 at 5:33 PM

Annie Lennox – Why – Live

Seven Percent Solution on August 29, 2010 at 6:06 PM

If American feminists are concerned about the oppression of women, then why the dreadful and complete silence about:

female genital mutilation in Africa and the Middle East,
the complete oppression of women under Islam, and
the traffic in young girls in Asia and the Middle East?

The silence is deafening.

Dhuka on August 29, 2010 at 6:39 PM

The book Freedomnomics talks about this.

RushBaby on August 29, 2010 at 6:55 PM

Imagine that. Smart strong women don’t gather together to celebrate their being victims. They go out, and make their own place in the world.

Slowburn on August 29, 2010 at 7:22 PM

The same wymyn who excoriated Clarence Thomas over the uncorroborated testimony of Anita Hill proceeded to spend the next eight years running interference for Bill Clintoon as he harassed his way across his female subordinates.

Those who championed a woman’s choice to have an abortion excoriated Sarah Palin for choosing not to have an abortion when she found out her baby had Downs. Those who called Palin a brainless ditz advocated voting for the brainless ditz named 0bama.

I was unaware the feminist movement in this country had any credibility left.

Sekhmet on August 29, 2010 at 7:24 PM

canopfor on August 29, 2010 at 5:33 PM

Annie Lennox – Why – Live

Seven Percent Solution on August 29, 2010 at 6:06 PM

Seven Percent Solution:You nailed it SPS to a T,most
superb choice!!!—-:)

canopfor on August 29, 2010 at 7:25 PM

I was unaware the feminist movement in this country had any credibility left.

Sekhmet on August 29, 2010 at 7:24 PM

I am not sure they do except with the usual suspects. One of those being the MSM and they can deliver the message when they want to. The Government doling out money to these groups keeps them viable, I think.

bluemarlin on August 29, 2010 at 7:28 PM

For many women, these liberal feminists lost all credibility during the Democratic primaries when they abandoned Hillary Clinton at the drop of a hat and went all out for an inexperienced, untested, unimpressive male. It was just simply inexplicable, given Clinton’s knowledge of the issues, work ethic, and strong advocacy for issues supporting women and minorities. So while it would appear that these feminists are still beating on the same drum, even many Democratic women are marching to a different beat.

oldoldbabs on August 29, 2010 at 7:38 PM

I can’t say I’ve heard or seen Ms. Brod before, but the combination of her photo with the sheer force of her writing leads me to conclude that she is the latest addition to an ever-growing list of VERY attractive conservative ladies on the national radar. Yeah, Baby!!

OneVision on August 29, 2010 at 9:09 PM

Hate you didn’t decide to run. we will all be better off when we quit defining issues as woman, black, gay or (insert your oppressed minority here). The current economy should drive the point home. When things are bad, they are bad for everyone. And as Reagan like to point out, when they are good they are good for everyone.

pgrossjr on August 29, 2010 at 9:25 PM

When you look at the issues and positions of importance to “mainstream” feminist organizations, two overarching themes jump right out:

1. The feminists don’t want financial independence, they simply want to marry and tap Uncle Sam and his deep, deep pockets.

2. The feminists don’t want to deal with compromises and responsibilities… they want to stay in the unitary universe of perpetual adolescence. No judgment or interference with any decision; not from parents, real husbands or the new husband Uncle Sam, ’cause nobody elses opinions really matter. Pure adolescent worldview.

Come to think of it… number 1 is pretty damn childish as well. I guess you could say that movement feminism is all about stopping the movement from adolescence to adult.

stevieray on August 29, 2010 at 9:55 PM

I long for an America without hyphens. Until then I’m an American-American. Unless an issue is medical there shouldn’t even be men’s and women’s issues per se.

Mojave Mark on August 29, 2010 at 11:37 PM

Dhuka on August 29, 2010 at 6:39 PM

Because that would take actual personal courage and imagination.

When they take on safe issues they can fight battles that have been settled and won for decades while they remain safely protected.

They’re merely playacting, it’s like a game of pretend for them.

NoDonkey on August 30, 2010 at 3:27 AM

For many women, these liberal feminists lost all credibility during the Democratic primaries when they abandoned Hillary Clinton at the drop of a hat and went all out for an inexperienced, untested, unimpressive male. It was just simply inexplicable, given Clinton’s knowledge of the issues, work ethic, and strong advocacy for issues supporting women and minorities. So while it would appear that these feminists are still beating on the same drum, even many Democratic women are marching to a different beat.

oldoldbabs on August 29, 2010 at 7:38 PM

The two issues which cinched it for me were the amazingly sexist vitriol aimed at Clinton (eg, she gets emotional at “times of the month”) by the left and the 50s style opprobrium heaped on Bristol.

I grew up, child of a Feminist, being taught that I had control of my mind and body. Suddenly it was like being back behind twitching lace curtains. I thought we were supposed to have “choice”. In my book, that means the choice to have the baby.

Disclaimer: I totally disagree with the term pro-choice.

Hope on August 30, 2010 at 3:40 AM

I continue to maintain that the “feminist” movement was the best thing that ever happened…..to men.

Almost 40 years after women were supposedly “liberated” by Roe v. Wade and liberalized divorce laws, women are no better off, especially women who want to work outside the home and still have a family. The “choice” for most women is still children OR career. Men don’t have to make this choice, ever. Divorce liberates men to avoid repsonsibility for their children and enables them to go out and find a younger and hotter version of the first wife, while that first wife usually ends up poorer, single, and miserable.

This is especially true in the halls of Washington, D.C. I lived and worked there for 20 years, and having children definitely hurt my career. I was actually fired twice while pregnant, because the man who ran the office thought I was slacking off and would continue to after having a baby. Another woman I worked with was told to her face that she should stop trying to get promoted to a management position and “settle down and have babies.” I don’t know a single very successful woman in Washington who has children, and I know a fair number who have never even married. Nancy Pelosi is no role model for the average woman because she had family money and married into even more money. Women who do not have these advantages still must forego being mothers if they want to be really successful in business or politics.

Feminism has done NOTHING to improve this situation, and in fact, has made it worse by advocating first and foremost for abortion as the solution to women’s second-class status. And now we see the absurd rejection of a true feminist like Sarah Palin, who is the greatest possible role model for modern womanhood. It’s very sad.

rockmom on August 30, 2010 at 8:00 AM

Is your name really Brod? I mean come on, do you really expect to be taken seriously in a discussion about feminism with a name that sounds so much like “broad?”

OK, OK, I withdraw this bit of snark and bad taste :-)

MJBrutus on August 30, 2010 at 11:01 AM

MJBrutus on August 30, 2010 at 11:01 AM

It’s Skandahoovian: “brr-rowed”

Not broad, as in the Broad’s on the THE VIEW.

Sheesh.

Bruno Strozek on August 30, 2010 at 11:34 AM

It’s womYns’ groups, you sexists.

WannabeAnglican on August 30, 2010 at 12:02 PM

omfg this column is such a pile of partisan sh*t it’s unbelievable

why don’t you name the names of these womens’ groups instead of spewing this amazing assembly of heresay spitballs

then perhaps you could share with us some of the awesome ideas put forth by right wing womens’ groups you were in contact with

oh wait – are there any?

Dave Rywall on August 30, 2010 at 1:27 PM

Bruno Strozek on August 30, 2010 at 11:34 AM

TY! I learn something new every day :-)

MJBrutus on August 30, 2010 at 1:35 PM

Dave Rywall on August 30, 2010 at 1:27 PM

Conservative women do not need special groups. We are glad to have them not only in the same room as the men, but as leaders as well, if they have the belief, talent, and drive.

Slowburn on August 30, 2010 at 1:45 PM

Conservative women do not need special groups. We are glad to have them not only in the same room as the men, but as leaders as well, if they have the belief, talent, and drive.

Slowburn on August 30, 2010 at 1:45 PM
——-
Bwaaaaaaaaa ha ha ha ha so hilarious!
Thank you for this.

Dave Rywall on August 30, 2010 at 1:56 PM